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Monett's Fair invited to Players Championship

Thursday, August 18, 2011

(Photo)
Watching it go. Monett senior Jacob Fair earned a chance to compete in the AJGA Players Championship over Labor Day weekend in Florida. Fair is currently ranked the 19th best high school senior golfer in the nation according to the AJGA.
Monett's Jacob Fair earned an invitation to the American Junior Golf Association (AJGA) Players Championship. The tournament will be played at TPC Sawgrass, Stadium Course and Dye's Valley Course in Ponte Verda Beach, Fla.

"I'm excited and honored," said Fair. "I have put in a lot of hard work and effort over the summer, and the results are paying off."

The Junior Players Championship features 78 players, ages 12 to 18, from 21 states and 13 foreign countries. The Junior Championship is mirrored after the PGA Players Championship and its 7,215 yard, par-72 set up.

Fair is currently ranked the 19th best golfer in the Class of 2012 in the United States and 45th overall in the AJGA Polo Ranking system.

The only other Missouri golfer to receive an invitation is Donald Stimble, of Shell Knob. He has achieved a 72nd ranking.

The rankings are used to select the top junior players in the country. These rankings are used to round out AJGA Invitational fields and guide the Rolex Junior All-America selection process and determine AJGA Cup teams.

Rankings are calculated on a 52-week rolling points cycle. Only the most recent 52 weeks are counted in the rankings all starts in ranked events will count toward a player's ranking.

The system rewards players who compete against strong fields by assigning point values to each tournament used in the rankings. The point values awarded to a tournament are based on the strength of field for that event. Strength of field is determined by calculating the combined top-10 finishes of a given field over the past 52 weeks.

While Fair is excited, he still knows there is work that has to be done.

"I am really amazed how a kid from Monett can compete against the best golfers not just in the U.S. but from around the world." said Fair. "I can't be satisfied with just making the cut. The goal I set for myself is to become better each day, and the only way to get better is to keep playing."

Fair has enjoyed a very good summer. He finished second in three AJGA tournaments, won the Missouri Junior Amateur tournament and rose over 100 spots in the national rankings.

"My ultimate goal is to play on the PGA Tour," said Fair. "I have a long way to go before I reach that goal."

Fair is his own toughest critic when it comes to analyzing his game.

"I need more consistency and improvement in my short game," said Fair. "Tournaments are won and lost with the putter. When I miss and hit a bad shot, I need to miss in the right spot and leave myself a chance to dig out of the hole. Good golfers can stop the bleeding after one errant shot. I can't allow one bad shot to turn into two or three bad shots."

The mantra for the high school golfing phenom is simple.

"Practice, practice and practice," said Fair. "I want to go out and play my game and my style. I have to work on developing muscle memory and getting my swing down pat in order to continue to have tournament success."

In preparing for the Junior Players Championship Fair has employed a tactic that NASCAR drivers use -- the aid of video games.

"I have been playing Tiger Wood's PGA golf game, which has the TPC Sawgrass course on its menu," explained Fair. "I hope it pays dividends. The eighth hole, according to the game, is a 240 yard par three and that par is a good score for this hole. We will see how it plays out."

The tournament is slated for Aug. 31 through Sept. 4.



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